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Original Article

SJEMed. 2023; 4(2): 370-375

Patient-healthcare worker communication in emergency departments: patient perspectives

Abdulaziz Abdulrahman Alghamdi, Ghali Syed Hmed, Abdulkareem Mamoon Aloqbawi, Badr Ayed Almutairi, Fatimah Abdulaziz Alsumari, Mogbel Khalaf Alharbi, Rashed Abdullah Al Nemer, Rakan Ali Alshehri.


Background: Effective communication between healthcare practitioners and patients in the emergency department (ED) is crucial for patient satisfaction and quality of care. This study explored patients’ perspectives on communication with nurses and physicians in the ED.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using a sample of 159 patients to assess the type of information relayed by nurses and doctors. The interview data were analyzed to examine nursing staff communication, physician communication, and communication difficulties.
Results: Nurses were found to be less likely to inform patients about their results or disposition. While 81.2% of physicians introduced themselves to patients, only 51.6% stated their status level. Approximately 68.6% of subjects were offered analgesia or treatment, and 60% reported no communication difficulties with medical staff. Empathy was demonstrated by 54.2% of healthcare practitioners, and nearly 80% of patient encounters were conducted in understandable language.
Conclusion: The study highlights the importance of effective communication in the ED, including empathy, information provision, and language barriers. To improve patient satisfaction and healthcare quality, medical organizations should develop comprehensive work plans, provide communication skills workshops, and enhance the ED work environment. Future research should focus on the perspectives of medical staff and explore communication in larger samples and various contexts.

Key words: Emergency department, patient communication, healthcare practitioners, patient satisfaction, physician-nurse interaction.

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